One of the world's major ski centres, the Grandes Rousses ski area above Alpe d'Huez is a huge and high domain served by an extensive lift system. The resort itself is one of Europe's highest and largest with amassive vertical drop, crowned by the Sarenne Glacier. Built above the original village of Huez, the resort has expanded in all directions over the past 20 years. Today the resort is big and vibrant with far more shopping and 'things to do generally' off the slopes than in most other ski centres, especially by French standards. Architecturally the place is a mish mash of traditional Alpine chalet style wood and stone buildings, some rather ugly rectangular concrete developments and one tasteful modern construction. There are two huge beginners areas directly above the resort and those going on to the top of the lifts will be able to see a fifth of France, on a clear day, from the top station. The resort has a reputation for both good snow falls and good sunshine with south facing slopes - the areas protected by nearly 800 snow cannon. Alpe d'Huez is one of the most southerly located major international resorts in the French Alps.ActivitiesSnowboarding: Two snow parks offer a variety of attractions and challenging terrain. Cross Country Profile: 50 km of cross country terrain available at the location. LodgingSlopeside accommodations are available among a total of 32,000 beds. 18 additional hotels located nearby.Winter RecreationOther activities offered at the location or nearby are: a fitness center with swimming, ice rinks, and squash; aerobics, air rifles, archer, arm wrestling, body building, classical music, concerts, wall climbing, curling, gold, ice driving, jazz dancing, martial arts, snow skooter, sumo wrestling, table tennis, tennis, weight training, sledding, paragliding, snowmobiling; cinemas and night clubs.